I chose to critique this artefact because the target audience is senior students, the same audience I chose for my artefact. Within my own artefact for senior students on digital curation, I referred very briefly to personal learning networks. I think that this artefact complements mine and could be paired with mine to give students a better understanding of PLNs and the tools that they can use to learn now and into the future. I was also intrigued by the animation tool utilised to create the knowledge networking artefact.
Retrieved from https://youtu.be/evlWD5qiRI8
What is a PLN? is a brief animated video constructed using Animatron and hosted on YouTube. Animation, text and narration complement each other and clearly convey what a PLN is, why students should cultivate one and practical suggestions on how to get started. The narrator begins by concisely explaining the different terminology that is used to describe a personal learning network and reinforces the terms with a simple animation. It is evident early in the video that senior students are the intended audience through the inclusion of “vox pops” of students being filmed and asked what they think a personal learning network is. This element engages the target audience and sets the scene for further exploration.
In designing the artefact, the attention span of the audience has been considered and the running time of just over three minutes is appropriate to introduce the topic and not overwhelm the audience. A basic instructional design of tell, show, do and review is utilised. The narrator tells the audience what a PLN is, why developing PLN is important and how students can leverage tools to develop a PLN. Social networking logos appear and show familiar social tools that can be used for learning and to develop a PLN. By using familiar social tools as examples, the creator provides students with a non-threatening starting point. The narrator and accompanying visuals indicate, very briefly, how the tools could be used by students. The narrators’s call to action, extolling the benefits of PLNs, encourages students to go ahead and do it.
The video does stand alone, however the lack of interaction required by the viewer makes the learning experience rather passive. This passivity could easily be overcome by using the video as a stimulus for further discussion in the classroom and thus providing multiple opportunities for learner engagement. The video is well paced, clearly narrated, uncluttered and adequately answers the question in the title.
My knowledge networking artefact proposal for a video on digital content curation for senior students has been produced and submitted for assessment. In my proposal I indicated that I would use Adobe Spark Video, however I switched to iMovie. Although I had not used iMovie before I found it very easy to use after watching a YouTube tutorial. iMovie allowed me to manipulate and edit images, video, narration and a soundtrack and host the video on YouTube. The tools I used are listed below:
I was pleased that I kept to my proposed timeline and completed the artefact with enough time to elicit some feedback. The timing was not great for getting feedback from students. I surveyed ten students but only one responded during the last week of a very busy term for senior students. This was better than nothing and the answers gave me some confidence that the video production quality was good and that the main message was clear. I also tweeted my video to some curation experts and was very excited to get responses and shares of my video from Kaye Oddone and Robin Good.
@KMalbon I love it! Using the wardrobe as a metaphor makes it immediately relatable to students- can I share it (of course attributing you?)
The video can be used by teachers or teacher librarians to introduce students to digital curation. I envisage educators then working alongside their students to expand on the video by discussing the process of curation and the information and digital literacy skills required to be a good curator.
Organisations, libraries and individuals practice content curation as a way of filtering, managing and making sense of huge volumes of digital and physical information. Content curation involves sifting, selecting, sorting, arranging, publishing and sharing the best information on a topic (Kanter, 2011). In a network age, students need to develop the skills of content curation and know how to use digital curation tools to become adept knowledge constructors (International Society for Technology in Education, 2016).
The artefact, Digital Curation for Senior Students (Malbon, 2016) is a short video that educators can use in the library or classroom to introduce content curation and digital curation tools to students aged between fifteen and eighteen. Most senior secondary students are immersed in social networks and use the internet to satisfy the majority of their information needs (ACMA, 2014). The ability to access networks does not guarantee that students have the necessary metacognitive skills to negotiate the online environment and the abundance of information flowing through it. (Antonio & Tuffley, 2015). The video emphasises that information overload can be managed by understanding the process and tools of digital content curation.
A blog post about content curation by Kaye Oddone (2016) was the catalyst for creating a video on digital curation aimed at students. Employing the practice of digital storytelling, the video is an amalgamation of still images, video clips, narration and a music soundtrack. The final product was created with iMovie, an application supplied with iMac computers and hosted on YouTube.
The design thinking process for educators of discovery, interpretation, ideation, experimentation and evolution was utilised by the creator. This process helped to shape a vague idea into a useful artefact. The creator was willing to make mistakes, learn from them, make adjustments and elicit feedback from a variety of sources.
To sustain the viewer’s attention, keeping the length of the video to between three and four minutes was a priority. To achieve this aim, a basic storyboard guided the selection and creation of appropriate media and the script. The time constraint was challenging and resulted in the script being edited and some content and media being cut from the final artefact.
A metaphor was introduced at the beginning of the video to gain the viewer’s attention, make the content instantly relatable to students and to structure the narrative. The metaphor of an overflowing wardrobe was used to illustrate information overload. Curation as a method of managing abundance was explained and demonstrated to the viewer.
The curation process was explained using narration and text. Quotes from digital content curation experts were interspersed throughout the video to complement the narration. Quote and text slides were produced in Canva using Creative Commons images. The screencasting tool Screencast-o-matic was utilised to demonstrate selected digital curation tools. Due to time constraints not all of the tools featured could be demonstrated. A suggested toolkit of digital curation tools suitable for senior students was curated in Symbaloo and displayed multiple times throughout the video. A word cloud of the vocabulary synonymous with curation was created in Tagul and also displayed at various times throughout the video to reiterate the language of digital content curation.
The creator envisaged the artefact being used predominantly by educators as an introductory resource to stimulate discussion and further learning or embedded into a research task. The video does however stand-alone and could be viewed by individuals in a formal or informal learning environment.
Content curation is a valuable information life skill (Valenza, 2012) that can be used by students to manage and make sense of information in a networked environment. The negative impacts of information overload can be reduced by using strategies to filter, classify and annotate material (Jarche, 2010). Students can take control of their information environment (Bawden & Robinson, 2009) by using digital curation processes and tools. The video’s narrative and accompanying images communicates this message to students and introduces them to appropriate tools.
The video aims to encourage students to delve deeper and explore digital curation with the guidance of their teacher or teacher librarian. Educators can empower students to be thoughtful digital citizens by providing them with guidance (Orth & Chen, 2013). The attributes of good curation tools are identified and a selection of tools suitable for secondary students are briefly outlined in the artefact. In the classroom the educator could expand on the video and present more detailed demonstrations of the tools or get students to investigate the tools further and demonstrate them to their peers.
Being able to locate, evaluate, store, retrieve, ethically use, create and communicate knowledge are elements of information literacy (Catts & Lau, 2008) that are essential to being a good curator. It is recognised that expert curators engage high level thinking skills to deliver quality curated collections (Tolisano, 2011). The video could initiate a class discussion on information literacy skills and ways to improve and develop them when information and knowledge is distributed through global participatory networks such as blogs, wikis and social networks (Wesch, 2014). Many students are exploring their interests outside of school using technology and networks, however it cannot be assumed that all students are capable of using these tools for learning (Richardson & Mancabelli, 2011). For students to fully participate in the digital world the teaching of digital information literacy is necessary (Antonio & Tuffley, 2015) and the digital curation process provides opportunities for authentic learning experiences.
Teaching students about professional learning networks or personal learning networks helps their current learning and prepares them for future work (Clifford, 2013). Employers value lifelong learning skills and the ability to connect and network with others. Lifelong learning is a habit of mind that requires effort and commitment (Whitby, 2013). A professional learning network provides anytime, anywhere learning opportunities and also support when requested (Rajagopal, Joosten-ten Brinke, Van Bruggen & Sloep, 2012). Knowing how to use digital curation tools to manage information and to collaborate with others is beneficial to developing and maintaining an active and vibrant personal learning network. By developing a personal learning network, students can also follow their own interests and passions using digital curation tools (White, 2012). Many curation tools facilitate collaborative curation that enables students to connect locally or globally with people who share similar passions. While the artefact only touched briefly on the collaborative aspect of digital curation, educators could adopt a tool for their class to use. This would allow students to practice the social skills of curation such as tagging and sharing.
Instructional design was a consideration during the planning, design and creation of the artefact. Instructional design is a way of analysing the learning needs of the audience and developing experiences to meet these needs (Culatta, 2016). The creator used the ADDIE model, Gagne’s nine events and the simple model of Tell, show, do and review to plan the artefact (Kunkle, 2011).
A simple method of instructional design, tell, show, do and review was used in the ideation phase of the artefact to provide the creator with a scaffold for producing the video. The video would tell students what digital curation was, why it is an important skill for making sense of information and how they could do it using digital curation tools. The video would show information, present tools and demonstrate tools. Challenge statements or call to action statements to experiment with digital curation tools and learn the skills of digital curation would set the expectation to do it. Review was not applicable in the ideation phase. The creator believes the final product achieved these broad goals.
The ADDIE model consists of analyse, design, develop, implement and evaluate. During the analyse stage; the creator spoke to students in the target audience about their information management strategies. From these conversations it was determined that digital curation was not widely practiced by these students. A literature review uncovered many articles about digital content curation for organisations and educators but very few articles about the pedagogical advantages for secondary school students. The ISTE Standards for Students 2016 (International Society for Technology in Education, 2016) states that students, as knowledge constructors, should be able to critically curate digital information using tools, create artefacts and make connections. The creator determined that there was a need for an artefact on this topic, aimed at senior secondary students that educators could use as an introductory resource that would lead to further discussion and exploration.
In the develop phase, the creator settled on a metaphor for the narrative after consulting with the school’s media studies teacher. The opening scene of the video introduces the metaphor and uses the first of Gagne’s nine events to gain the audience’s attention. The decision to limit the video to four minutes was made to cater for the attention span of the audience. This placed constraints on the amount of content in the video. Inform the learner of the objective and present information are the second and third events and were limited to a brief outline of the process of curation as a way of managing information. Time did not allow for an explanation of lifelong learning and personal learning networks. The fifth event, provide guidance, was attempted using screencasting videos to demonstrate two digital curation tools. The demonstrations only gave viewers a glimpse at the tools and did not meet the intention of guiding the learner. The sixth event, elicit performance was limited to the narrator imploring students to experiment with digital curation tools and attempt the steps of digital curation. More opportunities to expand on the content of the video and put into practice the skills would need to be presented in the classroom with the support of the educator.
The evaluation phase took advantage of the creator’s personal learning network to elicit feedback. The completed video was tweeted with the Knowledge Networking for Educators subject hashtag INF532 and to specific people, including Kaye Oddone who inspired the artefact. Feedback was positive and the use of the metaphor was said to make the content immediately relatable to students. A Google form including the video, nine multiple choice questions and one open ended question was sent to ten senior school students asking for their feedback. Disappointingly only one response was received however it was positive and confirmed that the video’s message was clear and the technical quality was high. A bigger sample size of students is required to determine whether students would respond as positively to the video as the adults considering the creator is much older than the students.
The genesis of the artefact came from a blog post shared on social media by a connected educator geographically distant from the creator. Content, media and feedback was sourced using social media and web 2.0 tools made possible because “digital networked infrastructure is amplifying our ability to access and use nearly unlimited resources and incredible instruments while connecting with one another” (Thomas & Brown, 2011, p. 17). The creator’s personal learning network and knowledge of social media was integral to the creation of a relevant artefact that introduces students to personal knowledge management. As a pedagogical tool, digital curation can enable students to build personal learning networks, to fully participate in a networked environment and become confident knowledge constructors.
Rajagopal, K., Joosten-ten Brinke, D., Van Bruggen, J., & Sloep, P. (2011). Understanding personal learning networks: Their structure, content and the networking skills needed to optimally use them. First Monday, 17(1). doi:10.5210/fm.v17i1.3559
Richardson, W., & Mancabelli, R. (2011). The power of networked learning. In Personal learning networks : using the power of connections to transform education (pp. 1-14). Moorabbin, Victoria: Solution Tree Press.
Thomas, D., & Brown, J. S. (2011). Arc-of-life learning: A new culture of change. Lexington, Ky: CreateSpace.